Quantum imaging hub in UK gets funding boost

The UK Quantum Technologies Innovation Fund has invested £640 million in QuantIC, the University of Glasgow-led quantum imaging technology hub.

The UK Quantum Technologies Innovation Fund has invested £640 million in QuantIC, the University of Glasgow-led quantum imaging technology hub. Funding for two partnerships with M Squared Lasers (Glasgow, Scotland) and one with Compound Semiconductor Technologies Global (Hamilton, Scotland) were announced during the international Quantum Technologies Showcase at the Queen Elizabeth II Conference Centre in London.

The UK Quantum Technologies Innovation Fund is a joint investment by Innovate UK and the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC). Projects supported by successful bids to the fund will link academia and industry to research and translate quantum technologies into new products and services. The successful bids linked to QuantIC are:

- Gas Sight: Quantum technologies for gas imaging, in partnership with M Squared Lasers

- CoolBlue: Quantum cooling using mode controlled blue lasers, in partnership with Compound Semiconductor Technologies Global

- DIFFRACT (Integrated Distributed Feedback Lasers for Cold Atom Technologies), in partnership with M Squared Lasers along with Optocap, Kelvin Nanotechnology, and the University of Birmingham.

Two other quantum-related companies, ID Quantique (Geneva, Switzerland) and QxBranch (Washington, DC), announced the opening of UK offices to move closer to the UK quantum program. Exhibits at the international Quantum Technologies Showcase demonstrated the development of 3D cameras, low-cost quantum keys for encryption, gas detectors, and quantum magnetometers that will enable higher imaging resolutions and the ability to image deeper areas of the brain.

The event was organised to mark the second anniversary of the UK National Quantum Technology Hubs which were set up in November 2014. The Hubs have been formed by a consortium of 17 universities led by the universities of Birmingham, Glasgow, Oxford and York, funded by EPSRC. Professor David Delpy, Chair of the UKNQTP, said: “This second showcase event demonstrates the progress we have made with the number of exhibits increasing from 11 to 39 and industry partners being more clearly visible throughout both the speaker programme and exhibition.”

The funding announcement came as the Government Office for Science published a new report exploring how the UK economy could benefit from quantum technologies. The report examines how technologies using quantum physics are being applied and how they will develop in the future. It focuses on the specific applications of quantum clocks, quantum imaging, quantum sensing and measurement, quantum computing and simulation, and quantum communications.

The report may be found here: The quantum age: technological opportunities

Source: University of Glasgow

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